We begin with images, closed circuit footage of a spectacular eruption from Agence France-Presse:
CCTV footage shows Japan volcano eruption
CCTV footage captured the whole eruption of Mount Otake last Saturday, which left at least 36 people lifeless.
From the Associated Press, cannabis vs Cohoe:
Biologists identify pot gardens as salmon threat
Water use and other actions by the marijuana industry in the Emerald Triangle of Northern California and Southern Oregon are threatening salmon already in danger of extinction, federal biologists said Tuesday.
Concerns about the impact of pot farming were raised by the NOAA Fisheries Service in its final recovery plan for coho salmon in the region. The full plan was to be posted on the agency’s website.
A copy obtained in advance calls for determining then decreasing the amount of water that pot growers illegally withdraw from creeks where young fish struggle to survive.
From Want China Times, a land grab in the North:
Norway up in arms over Chinese tycoon’s Arctic ambitions
A Chinese billionaire entrepreneur who once worked for the Communist Party’s propaganda department has sparked controversy in Norway after being named as a potential buyer for a large tract of Arctic land near Longyearbyen, the capital of Norway’s northernmost territory.
Based to a report from the New York Times, Huang Nubo, a property developer and entrepreneur who heads the Beijing Zhongkun Investment Group, could end up being the new owner of the uninhabited land unless the Norwegian government can scrap together a competing bid in time to ensure that the property does not fall into foreign hands, as it had promised to do in May amid a public outcry over the mere mention of Huang’s name given a fiasco over a previous attempt to buy land to develop a resort in Iceland and knowledge of Beijing’s ambitions in the Arctic region.
Huang, 58, is currently ranked the 90th richest person in China with estimated assets of US$2.3 billion according to the Hurun Report, the “China rich list” published by Rupert Hoogewerf. He is believed to have strong ties to the Communist Party after having worked in its publicity department from 1981 to 1990.
On to the illness beat, starting with a Chinese outbreak from Global Times:
South China province sees 1, 152 new dengue fever cases
South China’s Guangdong Province reported 1,152 new cases of Dengue on Sunday, boding ill for the week-long National Day holiday that begins on Oct. 1, local health authorities announced on Monday.
The number continues rising with the total number of cases reaching 11,867, according to the provincial health and family planning commission.
A fatality was reported on Sunday in the provincial capital Guangzhou, bringing the death toll to four in the province, three in Guangzhou where 9,987 cases have been reported. The other was in adjacent Foshan city, where 1,254 cases were confirmed, according to the commission.
BBC News covers causation:
Antibiotics ‘linked to childhood obesity’
Young children who are given repeated courses of antibiotics are at greater risk than those who use fewer drugs of becoming obese, US researchers say.
The JAMA Pediatrics report found children who had had four or more courses by the age of two were at a 10% higher risk of being obese.
But scientists warn this does not show antibiotics cause obesity directly and recommend children continue using them. Many more studies are needed to explain the reasons behind the link, they say.
From TheLocal.ch, taxing all for corporate contamination:
National tax planned to cut water micropollutants
Starting in 2016, an annual tax of up to nine francs ($9.43) per resident will help finance equipment in around 100 sewage treatment plants across Switzerland to remove microscopic pollutants from lakes and rivers, the federal government announced on Tuesday.
Revenues from the tax will finance 75 percent of the cost of the measures called for in new national legislation to protect water from pollution, the government said.
The new facilities will be installed at existing purification plants to remove micropollutants originating from products such as drugs, hormones, cosmetics or insecticides that even in small quantities can have an adverse impact on fish and other aquatic life.
Existing plants are unable to screen out the microscopic pollutants.
Another contaminant, another affliction form Environmental Health News:
Water contaminant linked to children’s low IQs
Babies born to mothers with high levels of perchlorate during their first trimester are more likely to have lower IQs later in life, according to a new study.
The research is the first to link pregnant women’s perchlorate levels to their babies’ brain development. It adds to evidence that the drinking water contaminant may disrupt thyroid hormones, which are crucial for proper brain growth.
Perchlorate, which is both naturally occurring and manmade, is used in rocket fuel, fireworks and fertilizers. It has been found in 4 percent of U.S. public water systems serving an estimated 5 to 17 million people, largely near military bases and defense contractors in the U.S. West, particularly around Las Vegas and in Southern California.
On to the endangered Latin American environment, first with the Guardian:
Nicaragua canal will wreak havoc on forests and displace people, NGO warns
- Forests of the World says shipping firms must pressure Nicaragua and Chinese backer to limit canal’s impact
Shipping firms should pressure the Nicaraguan government and the Chinese backer of a proposed canal to ensure that the project does not force indigenous people off their land and inflict massive environmental damage on the country’s ecosystem, an environmental advocacy group has urged.
The proposed 178-mile waterway seeks to rival the Panama canal by offering an alternative Atlantic-Pacific passage which cuts voyage times. Construction is scheduled to begin in December with $50bn (£31bn) funding from the Hong Kong Nicaragua Canal Development Investment Company (HKND), which is owned by Chinese lawyer Wang Jing.
But Danish NGO Forests of the World has accused the Nicaraguan government and HKND of failing to involve indigenous people in the planning process, saying the canal will wreak havoc on forests and force people to move.
“The canal is to be built straight through the Rama and Kriol territory, fragmenting it into two parts,” said Claus Kjaerby, Central America representative at Forests of the World. “It’s just like if someone wanted to build a bicycle trail through your garden and they do not consult with you.”
And the second, from Al Jazeera America:
Oil in the Amazon: Who stands to win and lose?
- In eastern Ecuador, unemployment is high despite the area’s oil boom, which could also endanger rainforest biodiversity
Yasuni National Park is unique. It’s regarded as one of the world’s most biodiverse places. A refuge to more than 20 types of endangered mammals, just 2 ½ acres of its Amazonian forest contains more than 100,000 species of insects, and is home to nearly as many kinds of trees and shrubs as there are in the United States and Canada, combined.
In 2007, Ecuador’s government announced it wouldn’t drill for oil in an untouched section of Yasuni, what’s known as the ITT block. In exchange for leaving the oil in the ground, President Rafael Correa demanded $3.6 billion from developed countries. But Ecuador received just $13 million. Last year, Correa announced oil extraction would go ahead.
Since then, oil companies have been busy surveying Yasuni’s ITT block, with plans to start drilling in 2016. Correa says the project will help alleviate poverty, but members of the Waorani tribe, which has lived in the Amazon for centuries, say the drilling will disrupt their way of life. Scientists, meanwhile, say they’re concerned about the park’s fragile ecosystem.
The Independent covers another water tragedy, a sea starved for decades by irrigation for a Soviet-era industrial cotton scheme:
The Aral Sea: Nasa pictures show how what was once the fourth largest lake in the world has become almost completely dry
It was once the fourth largest lake in the world, but what used to be an expanse of water in the basin of the Kyzylkum Desert now lies almost completely dry.
The Aral Sea has been retreating over the last half-century since a massive Soviet irrigation project diverted water from the rivers that fed it into farmland.
Images taken from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer on Nasa’s Terra satellite have now depicted how since the turn of the century the lake has increasingly shrunk until this year saw its eastern lobe dry up completely.
After the jump, the vanishing Mexican maize gene pool, a Chinese pro-GMO propaganda push, preparing Los Angeles for the Big One, Fukushimapocalypse Now! — first with exclusion reduced, hot waste plans revealed and other plans delayed, volcanic nuclear anxiety, a longer wait for a long-awaited restart, Anglo/Japanese decommissioning alliance, firing up alternatives, and payment for a bitter Navajo uranium mining legacy. . . Continue reading